To demonstrate this, imagine a high school basketball team. The coach gravitates to one player in particular. He pours guidance into this player, expects him to do well, and gives him lots of support. But there’s another player the coach doesn’t like as much. The coach isn’t mean to this player per-say, but he largely ignores him, giving him far less instruction overall.
The player who receives the coach’s support believes he’s an excellent athlete in the making! Not only that, but his performance improves tremendously by the end of the season. The player who doesn’t receive the same attention second guesses himself and loses interest in basketball altogether. At the end of the year, the coach gloats in the fact that he nurtured the right player, but really, it’s just a self-fulfilling prophecy. Who knows what the other player could have achieved given the same care and guidance as the first.